Third retailer settles over Core copying

Furniture producer Core Products taken legal action against another retailer that copied its designs and was selling them to customers in the UK.

The company, represented by intellectual property specialists at Taylors Solicitors, has successfully taken action against Mercers Furniture, which infringed its design rights by replicating items from its Augusta collection. Pictured left are the original design and right the copied version. 

The items copied were a bedside cabinet, chests of drawers, a wardrobe, a coffee table, a flat-screen TV unit and sideboards.

Mercers Furniture and director Richard Mercer have provided undertakings to Core Products in respect of the infringement not manufacture, hold or sell the copied products; to deliver the infringing items in its possession to Core Products’ warehouse in Glenrothes; to retrieve the infringing stocks from trade buyers and deliver them to Glenrothes; to destroy all items in their possession which infringed the copyright of Core Products’ designs, such as materials and plans; and to pay a contribution towards Core Products’ legal costs.

Taylors successfully undertook action last year for infringement of Core Products’ design rights in a dual case against retailers VidaXL Marketplace and HBI Commerce, but then discovered Mercers Furniture, which is based in Rotherham, had also copied its products and was selling them to customers in the UK.

‘The Augusta Collection is an important and successful range for Core Products, a company which spends a lot of money on the design and creation of its furniture. Its products deserve to be protected against copying. This is the second case in which we have represented Core Products in protecting the Augusta designs, and we have successfully settled on both occasions. We are delighted to have once again assisted the company in protecting its intellectual property against infringers. Our success demonstrates that those who seek shortcuts to success by copying successful designs will pay a heavy price. We hope these two examples show others that are thinking of infringing Core Products’ ranges that copying will not be tolerated and that the company is willing to do what it takes to shield its brand. Core Products will not let others get away with infringing its products for their own financial gain,’ says Tony Catterall, Taylors’ head of intellectual property.

‘We are justifiably proud of our heritage of designing and developing furniture which has been specifically tailored to appeal to UK consumers. It is thanks to 35 years of experience within the furniture industry that we can develop the pieces we sell, and we strongly feel the integrity of our products should be protected. This settlement, along with the previous case, reflects our commitment to this,’ says Mary Wallace, Core Products director. 

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